After protests and petitions, campaigners turn to judges to halt spending decisions. Matt Chorley reports on how the taxpayer still picks up the tab
These are tough times for pedants like me. Like people with extra-sensitive skin, it takes only minuscule grammatical mistakes to make us flinch and squirm. There are some to whom a split infinitive is like biting on silver foil and others who spend their days shouting, dementedly, "fewer" at politicians who can't hear them. Almost daily, fresh horrors rise from the radio like the screech of chalk on a blackboard, and one of the most recent is "so". Why should so many interviewees begin their answers with this apparently incongruous word?
Nick Clegg's party wants to raise the age of criminal responsibility from 10 to 14, angering Conservative traditionalists
A paralysed stroke victim and his wife argue that legislation preventing her from helping him to die violates his human rights
Ian Dunbar was of that impressive and distinctively English lineage of prison governors who blended an unwavering humane respect for their charges with organisational realism and managerial flair. The penal landscape is a bleak and testing workplace at the best of times, and for a substantial portion of Dunbar's career was made even more dismal by the keenness of political parties to use crime and punishment for electoral advantage – and in consequence to embrace ill-considered and short-term policies.
The cabinet met at Chequers yesterday for its first full political session, without civil servants, since the coalition was formed. There in the leafy Buckinghamshire countryside, far from the hustle and bustle of Whitehall, they took stock of the challenges that lie ahead.
Penal reform is the intelligent way to save money and improve the future of the thousands of male offenders imprisoned each year
Kenneth Clarke's pledge to break with the Conservatives' traditional "prison works" philosophy and bring in more community sentences has provoked anger from the right of his party and a warning from criminal justice campaigners that his words must be matched by firm proposals.
Frantic behind-the-scenes negotiations are taking place to resolve policy differences between the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats before the coalition government outlines its legislative programme next week.
Kenneth Clarke admitted the Conservatives had only a "slim" chance of securing an overall majority in tomorrow's general election as the party launched a desperate last-minute effort to pass the winning post.
The main parties are preparing the ground for talks about the post-election balance of power
Government seizes on shadow minister's decision to back European Commission
Shadow Business Secretary's comments on Tory pledge a 'cock-up, not a conspiracy'
Rail enthusiasts face ban from platforms
David Cameron is under pressure from Tory activists to bring back "big beasts" including Kenneth Clarke and David Davis to give his Shadow Cabinet more gravitas.
The Conservative MP Damian Green was accused by police of "grooming" a Home Office mole. The accusation came during nine hours of questioning by police investigating at least 20 leaks of secret documents from the department. As details of the investigation emerged, the shadow Immigration minister told friends he was livid that detectives resorted to "provocative" language used to describe sex offenders and suicide bombers.